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Through the progress of human society, our primary source of energy has been non-renewable resources such as fossil fuels, which have had a tremendous effect on the planet in terms of emissions of greenhouse gases. Aside from energy requirements, our progress has taken a toll on our lands through large scale deforestation of indigenous forests and land degradation. Our agriculture practices have also been modified for large scale production, causing the implementation of unsustainable methods of farming.

Over the last few decades, the impact of our energy needs has slowly seen a reduction with inclusion of renewable energy & low-carbon technologies. Implementation of reforestation projects have helped the natural neutralization of carbon dioxide to mitigate GHG Emissions. Progress in mass-farming techniques which help in a more sustainable method of food production has also seen a significant rise, assisting our efforts to reduce the impact of GHG Emissions.

Shrink your carbon footprint. Find out how.

At Carbon Initiative Forum, we encourage individuals, business & governments to engage with us to lead this movement of change.

Switching to public transport such as buses and metros or even shared-cab services can significantly reduce your GHG emissions. The average GHG emissions released during commute by local bus that has a capacity of around 50 people is 0.015161 kgCO2e/passenger-km[1], while a typical shared cab carrying 3 passengers emits 0.042 kgCO2e/passenger-km[1]. Cab aggregators in the country have found that since their inception, about 8-9 million kg of carbon dioxide have been prevented. In comparison, a personal car – typically a hatchback – emits 0.126 kgCO2e/km[1]. Commuters who use the metro typically help emission reductions of approx. 100 gm of CO2e for every trip of 10 km.

What do you do if you already have a car?

1. Fuel efficiency is key. Ensure that you regularly give your car for servicing; look after your tyres and clutch plate – each part’s functioning is important for the overall efficiency. This also reduces costs of maintaining a car.

2. Look at carpool options as well; find out people around your area or in your office that travel from or to a similar destination and carpool. There are also apps that let you carpool and earn money.

3. Alternate between your car and public transport, this offsets your emissions.

4. Look for cleaner fuel cars like CNG ones, they emit only 14% of a Petrol or Diesel variant.

5. Re-think your travel, especially if it is for a short distance. If it’s for work, can you manage with a conference call? If it’s inevitable, offset it.

6. When possible, walk to your destination, especially if it is within a 2km radius.


[1]India GHG Program – India Specific Road Transport Emission Factors

Just by reducing garbage by 25%, you will reduce CO2 by 400 kg per year. We introduce 5R’s to help you reduce your garbage:

1. One man’s trash is another man’s treasure: Reuse as much of the waste as possible. With online platforms like Amazon letting you sell used products for handsome prices, this is another way to reduce your garbage. Reuse items that you can’t sell by increasing their usage for more than the stipulated time.

2. Waste not, Want not: Reduce the amount of items you buy as well. Re-think your purchase. Do you really need this item? Won’t something at home suffice for now? Try to lead a zero-waste lifestyle by composting most of your waste. Segregate waste – sell your dry waste to a radhi wala who will more often than not recycle it and compost your wet waste and soon see a flourishing garden at home.

3. Recycle, it’s cool: If you have to buy an item, try to look for recycled options or options that are environmentally-friendly, such as recycled items or biodegradable ones. For example, since toothbrushes are to be disposed of every three months, try to look for a bamboo equivalent or recycled plastic one. Take stock of your kitchen cupboards and wardrobes before you go shopping. This reduces your grocery and shopping bill as well.

4. Fix it: If things break, try to see if you can fix them before you throw them out. Look ay DIY tutorials to transform your existing items.

5. Curb Consumption: Look at the product’s lifecycle, has it been procured, manufactured or delivered in an unsustainable way? By refusing items and brands that indulge in environment harming activities, you are helping the environment and shaping the thought process of these industries to do better.

“If it can’t be reduced, reuse, repaired, rebuilt, refurbished, refinish, resold, recycled or composted, then it should be restricted, redesigned, or removed from production.” – Pete Seeger

Most of our primary energy consumption comes from non-renewable sources such as coal and thermal. Reducing your electricity usage will help your bill and the environment.

1. Switch: Switch off your electric appliancs, devices, and lighting and switch to LED bulbs.

2. Look, it’s a BEE!: Look for the BEE 5-star energy ratings before buying home appliances like Refrigerators and ACs. For appliances without a rating, like washing machines, look at energy consumption figures. This will help you to decide between models.

3. Blazin’: Use a solar water-heaters instead of electric geysers.

4. Inculcate clean cooking practices.

5. Energy Sabbath: For one day a week, do not use any electric device or appliances like TV, phone, cook stoves, etc. Live like the olden days. Every hour per week that you live no impact cuts your carbon emissions by 0.6 percent annually.

Source: http://www.yesmagazine.org/issues/climate-action/10-ways-to-change-your-life.

Day to day office requires energy and resource consumption

1. Switch: Use lights and fans only when required. Learn to turn off when not in use. Enable the power management for laptops and desktops.

2. Pop it open: Open a window or use the fan before your hand goes to the AC remote.

3. Segregate waste, try to compost waste. Look at ways you can curb your waste; find its source and plan accordingly.

4. Roadmap:Look at the travels of your employees. Look into solutions such as providing an office cab/bus. Incentivizes carpooling.

5. Don’t binge the bin:If there is a canteen, manage the food waste generated in your canteen. Food waste is a big emission activity.

6. Print less, go paperless

Food waste and Transportation are the biggest challenges while hosting or attending an event. Food waste accounts for 1 Lakh Crore in India each year. Transport to and from the place event is another emissions guzzler.

1. Ton(nes) of guests: If it is a big event, try to hold it in a central location so people’s travel times are cut. Arrange for a bus or cab that can transport groups of people to the event coming from one particular point.

2. Keep it sunny: Try to hold events during the day so that as much electricity is not consumed. If it has to be in the night, try to look for venues that are green in their outlook. Use alternatives like pretty lamps, or fairy lights instead of tube lights.

3. Fill your tummy, not the bin: Tie up with NGOs that will pick up the food from you at the end of the event and distribute it to those that go hungry otherwise. Look at locally sourced, seasonal foods for preparation. Keep an eye on food miles – a popular term in the Carbon world – which focuses on how that food was procured, produced and put on your plate. Reduce the number of items with meat in it.

4. Drink up: Skip the bottled water, and serve water in filters kept at various places at the venue. Dispensing those plastic bottles is a hassle and unnecessary.

5. Decor: Use small potted plants to decorate the venue. You could also use these as gifts to give to the guests.